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Saturday NBA Betting Picks: Our Favorite Playoff Bets for Nuggets vs. Lakers Game 5 (Sept. 26)

Saturday NBA Betting Picks: Our Favorite Playoff Bets for Nuggets vs. Lakers Game 5 (Sept. 26) article feature image

Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Nikola Jokic #15 of the Denver Nuggets and Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles Lakers.

  • The Los Angeles Lakers take on the Denver Nuggets in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals on Saturday.
  • Our staff's best bets for the game include an alternate spread, a total, and a prop bet on LeBron James.
  • Check out our experts' full breakdown of their picks with complete analysis below.

Looking for Sunday’s best bets? Click here.

Here we go again. The Denver Nuggets find themselves in the comfortably uncomfortable position of being down 3-1 in a series — this time to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Whether they can make history for the third time this postseason remains to be seen (you can read more about the matchup in our Game 5 preview here), but all eyes will be on Saturday’s matchup given their recent history.

So, where’s the value today? Our staff is here to break down their favorite NBA bets for tonight’s Western Conference finals matchup:

  • 9 p.m. ET: Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers

Saturday NBA Betting Picks

Odds as of Saturday night and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.

Brandon Anderson: Nuggets vs. Lakers

Nuggets odds +5.5 [BET NOW]
Lakers odds -5.5 [BET NOW]
Moneyline +188/-230 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 215 [BET NOW]
Time 9 p.m. ET

I just can’t get off the Nuggets. And I can’t quite get there on seeing the Lakers as a championship team just yet.

I know it’s LeBron James, and I know it’s the Lakers, but I just don’t see why Los Angeles is still favored so highly. These teams are dead even over the past three games. The Nuggets won a close Game 3. The Lakers won a close Game 4. And then, of course, there’s the Davis shot. This series could be tied 2-2 in a blink, and it’s not too far from Nuggets 3-1.

Of course, it’s not any of those things. It’s Lakers 3-1, and we’re on the slow Bataan death march toward another title for James.


These teams may not be dead even, but the Nuggets are in every game and giving the Lakers all they can handle. And given where the lines are in this game and series, that still leaves all the value on the Nuggets, especially with a potentially limited Anthony Davis, who is nursing an ankle injury.

I’m not interested in betting the Nuggets to cover in a close loss. I’m not even satisfied with the moneyline. All-in Denver.

I’m grabbing this alternate line with the best odds out there, and I’ll sprinkle a bit on the series line at +1600 too. If the Lakers take a big early lead and the live moneyline balloons, I’m buying back on the Nuggets there, too.

The Nuggets might be going down tonight, but I’m going down with the ship.

The Pick: Nuggets -2.5 alt spread (+215)

[Bet the Nuggets at DraftKings and get a $1,000 bonus, including a $500 risk-free bet]

Check out our free NBA odds page, which automatically surfaces the best line for every game. Subscribe to our new NBA Insiders tool at FantasyLabs to beat the market with our cutting edge player projections, injury news and betting thresholds.

Joe Dellera: Nuggets vs. Lakers

LeBron James and Co. should be highly motivated to squash any hopes the Nuggets have of another 3-1 comeback in the playoffs.

Considering Anthony Davis hurt his ankle in Game 4, this feels like an opportunity for James to soak up some extra stats. This series, James  is averaging 9.0 rebounds per game, per He has had 9 or more boards in the last 3 games.

Per Cleaning the Glass, LeBron already ranks in the 93rd percentile of all Playoff defensive rebounders as he’s secured 24.6% of his opponent’s missed field goals and 48.3% of opponents missed free throws. With Davis nursing an ankle injury, the paint and these rebounding opportunities should fall to James.

I see this prop listed at over 8.5 Rebounds (-130) and I like it up to (-150).

The PICK: LeBron James over 8.5 Rebounds (-130)

[Bet James’ rebounds at FanDuel completely risk-free for $1,000]

Malik Smith: Nuggets vs. Lakers

We have seen the Nuggets perform at their peak with their backs against during this postseason. They’ve been especially great on the offensive end in that regard, scoring at least 110 points in four of their six elimination games. The over is 2-3-1 in those games, according to our Bet Labs database, but a lot of that has been due to their defense stepping up to the task.

I think they will give a valiant effort on that end tonight, but I don’t expect it to be enough to keep the Lakers’ offense in check the way they did the LA Clippers. The Lakers have been smart about exploiting matchups in this series and each game there has been a random role player (Dwight Howard in Game 4) who steps up to give them something to supplement the scoring of LeBron James and Anthony Davis.

According to our Sports Insights tools, 87% betting tickets are on the over and 73% of the money is on the over as well. I think we can expect a high-scoring affair tonight.

The Pick: Over 214.5 (-110)

[Bet the over at BetMGM and get a $500 INSTANT deposit match]

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